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Push is on for Springfield casino

Monday, May 22, 2017

* Finke

Gambling expansion was approved in the Senate last week. It was sponsored by Democratic Sen. Terry Link of Waukegan, although a couple of Republicans support it.

A provision in the bill cuts taxes on casinos. Sen. Dale Righter, R-Mattoon, said the reduction will cost the state $280 million. Not so, replied Link, who said the cut will give casinos an incentive to expand their operations, which will actually generate more casino taxes.

So ponder for a moment: A Republican is expressing opposition to a tax cut, and a Democrat is touting a tax cut as a way to actually generate more taxes.

“I love the supply-side rhetoric,” Righter said.

Sigh.

* Meanwhile, a late push for a Springfield casino is being made. From the proponent…

A 1,200 position casino near the Old State Capitol will generate major economic benefits

· Drawing tourists visiting the Lincoln Museum and historic sites to spend at local businesses
· Estimated $150 million to $175 million in adjusted gross revenue, with a significant local share
· Those local dollars can invest in:

    * New buildings and existing building renovations for city school District 186
    * Much-needed renovations at the Illinois State Fairgrounds
    * Supporting the Prairie Capital Convention Center, affordable housing and more attractive entryways to the city
    * Downtown infrastructure needs

The guy who came up with the idea, Chris Stone, appeared on Rick Pearson’s WGN Radio program yesterday. Click here to listen.

Stone came up with the idea too late to get it into the gaming expansion bill that passed the Senate (again) last week.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

27 Comments
  1. - Norseman - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 9:57 am:

    Is this “Trickle down casinomics?”


  2. - Anon221 - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 9:58 am:

    Ahhh… so that’s a plan for the old Y lot;) Not quite the “park” Rauner wants, though…

    http://wtax.com/news/101101-mayor-on-governors-y-block-ideas/


  3. - Annonin' - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 9:59 am:

    The Stone idea is intriguin’ and no parkin’ which is critical in this region. It is pretty clear that DopeyDuct and his team do not plan to lift a finger to help Springfield or the fairgrounds — other than panhandling for mansion money. The legislature twice passed slots at the Fairgrounds, but Dopey and his GOPies failed to include in the Gamin’ GB. The idea was about 5 years old so not “too late”


  4. - 47th Ward - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:05 am:

    I thought the bar at the Wyndham Hotel counted as Springfield’s casino.


  5. - DuPage Bard - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:10 am:

    Now Springfield wants a Casino? Why not just give one to everyone? Really?


  6. - Rogue Roni - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:20 am:

    Only if the dealers and servers have to wear stove top hats and beards. But knowing Springfield a buffet would be a huge money maker.


  7. - Skeptic - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:33 am:

    “Ahhh… so that’s a plan for the old Y lot;)” No, it’s the Vista block! /snark


  8. - Give Me A Break - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:42 am:

    To make sure this is really a true Springpatch idea, each person utilizing a Springfield casino should at the end of their visit receive a Horsehoe Sandwich and use of a golf car during the fair. And if they are Repub, a state job which would allow them to complain about big government.


  9. - cdog - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:53 am:

    Make it non-smoking and it would probably draw from every casino within 300 miles.

    Smoke-permeated casinos are nasty and dampen demand from non-smokers who can barely breathe in them.


  10. - NoNews - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 10:56 am:

    @ cdog , our casinos are smoke free.


  11. - cdog - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 11:02 am:

    NoNews, my apologies if that’s the case.

    Most recent excursions for us, past 2 yrs, have been to St.Louis Mo, Michigan City, New Buffalo. Yuck.

    The last time we went to Peoria, it wasn’t non-smoking.

    Many of these have non-smoking rooms, but that’s no fun for many reasons.

    How long have IL casinos been non-smoking? 100% non-smoking?


  12. - anon2 - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 11:23 am:

    I wonder if Sen. Link can point to any examples of where a cut in tax rates increased revenues compared to what they were under the higher rates? He could ask Trump’s treasury secretary.


  13. - Ahoy! - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 11:23 am:

    The Springfield casino makes sense, especially since it can help fund some capital improvements (state fair grounds) that the State is not willing to make.

    It would also give the school district a boost which would help with funding that the district does not receive with all the state buildings. Even the buildings that the state leases are loosing value (which impacts property taxes) because of the lease structures and lack of payment from the state.

    In short, the GA should include Springfield in gaming as a way to provide money for the community that it is so badly neglecting.


  14. - downstate commissioner - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 11:24 am:

    I love casinos-brings in tax dollars and costs me nothing….
    Would be nice to upgrade the fairgrounds (maybe some road work?)


  15. - Curl of the Burl - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 11:30 am:

    I would assume that the old YWCA area would be in play. Otherwise it would be shoehorned in anywhere else. But can we sustain a casino? Our downtown tourists are often families or large groups coming for historic sights. Can we change that - especially when only handful of downtown restaurants are open past mid-afternoon? Color me skeptical - although I appreciate Mr. Stone’s gumption and ideas.


  16. - lake county democrat - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:06 pm:

    Link’s hometown is the place that needs a casino: not only to stop Illinois gambling dollars from going to Milwaukee but to try to energize what should be an attractive place for development: Waukegan has cheap property, a beautiful lakefront setting and a Metra train to Chicago - it’d be perfect for a casino.


  17. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:14 pm:

    Video gaming a/k/a slots with better PR have brought the reach of gambling machines into neighborhood taverns all across this state.

    What is the point of opposing casino expansion at this point?


  18. - Jose Abreu's last homer - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:44 pm:

    I use an online account that is Costa Rica based for my gaming needs. Why do our dinosaurs in charge not allow this to be widespread?


  19. - Kevin - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:51 pm:

    Put a casino at the fairgrounds…Let the state own it.. And put the money into the fairgrounds and capital projects… Also let them run horses at the track as much as they want….Put aside the lobbyists and make the state some money.


  20. - Curl of the Burl - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:55 pm:

    Kevin - that would be a much better option than downtown. Parking alone would be a pain for people coming to a downtown location.


  21. - Arthur Andersen - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 12:58 pm:

    Put the Casino in Washington Park.

    This way, Stone can walk to work. Cellini as well, since no casino going up without him having a piece and unlikely Raffi will be visiting the US anytime soon.


  22. - Anonymous - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 3:11 pm:

    Regulate online poker and rake in a bunch of $ without building anything brick or mortar.


  23. - illini - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 4:04 pm:

    @AA - a little close to the Casino Queen and Fairmont Park, but, why not?


  24. - Springpatch - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 4:23 pm:

    Maybe the casino could be staffed by CWLP management who pushes power and water market speculation.
    1990, 2003, and today -they’re not afraid to lose.


  25. - Springpatch - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 4:26 pm:

    PS I also understand Bill Cellini is feeling better after his early release and may be one of the founding investors. /s
    A true Illinois comeback story.


  26. - Lynn S. - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 6:12 pm:

    I’d be curious to see the data the revenue projections are based on. I could believe these numbers in Chicago or St. Louis, but Springfield? Not at all hard to find one-arm bandits nowadays, and we’ve got so many video game parlors in Champaign-Urbana that they’re now sending out coupons for free or reduced cost plays.

    Proposing a casino, on the other hand, seems to be a great way to score free media space.


  27. - Ma - Monday, May 22, 17 @ 7:16 pm:

    That is all Springfield need - - more gambling addicts. I really can not see a casino making it in Springfield.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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